Book Trailer The Noble Train

Tuesday, December 3, 2019

The Death of the Book that Didnt Happen

Oh it was supposed to go the way of the IPOD. You know the book. It was over. We would all be listening to or reading our books on kindles and those anachronistic tombs would be just hanging around the shelves waiting to start a good bonfire. didn't happen. Wait a minute. You mean the economics behind ripping a .99 cent song or spotify didn't apply to books? Come on. People are driven by economics and convenience and it surely is cheaper and easier to download a book than lugging around a pound and half of books in your backpack. So...RIP book.

But then it didn't happen. Maybe it was the college class of advanced fiction or intro English that tipped me off.   I told the students on the first day. Yes you can download the books if you want. How many people have kindles? Crickets. How many people download books to their computers. Crickets. Wait a minute. The vaunted eighteen year old tech savvy demographic was not behaving. At least not for the pundits and doomsayers of books. Then sales of ebooks flatlined and I started doing back to back book signings in Barnes and Nobles around Chicago. I mean lots of them. Twenty or so around the holidays and then I got my second shock.

My books are not discounted. I am not Tom Clancy and my publishers decline to break the price on my hardcovers. So my books cost around 32.00 or 36.00 out the door. People didn't blink. They didn't even ask the price. They just bought and bought and bought. No sign of the Kindle or Nook anywhere. I sold 24,000 dollars worth of hardcovers last why didn't the damn book die? Well...people who read are different animals than those who rip songs from the Internet. Also, we work on our computers. Yeah that thing we lug around and haunts us in our sleep to the point we have to get stoned or take a drink to calm our jazzed brains does not lend itself to pleasure. And reading is pleasure.
Now there are those who say well virtual reality will replace the book eventually. Yawn. Forget about the research that says when we watch something our brain just about goes to sleep and that words are about the only sparks that conjure up a scene in the tabula rasa of our brain. Virtual reality replace books. Sure it will. Just like we all drink lattes and have tattoos and ear rings and live in urban areas and have sleek new phones and cars. Not. Most people shop at Target. Pay the mortgage. Hope their kids have a better future and if they have a moment for a good story and have a book they will read that over just bout every other delivery device So lets hear it for that old thumbed and yellowed bit of parchment between  the covers. Long live the book...the book....the book. 

Books by William Hazelgrove